NHS Lanarkshire responds to rise in cases of syphilis »

… and tested.

Syphilis is a bacterial infection that can be transmitted by vaginal, anal and oral sex.

People with syphilis may develop a sore in the genital area or in their mouth. They may also develop a rash over their body, palms of the hands and soles of the feet. These symptoms may disappear without the person being aware of them.

If syphilis is not treated, it will progress and can cause serious damage to the heart, arteries and the nervous system.

Dr Anne McLellan, …

Gonorrhoea »

… penis, vagina and anus. It can also be caught and passed on by the throat from unprotected oral sex with an infected partner.

How do I know if I have gonorrhoea?

The majority of women and some men will not show any signs of being infected, so it is possible that they might have gonorrhoea but have no symptoms. The simple answer is to have a test.

What are the symptoms?

Men :

Most men with gonorrhoea in the urethra (the tube that carries urine from the bladder to …

Oral Sex »

Oral sex (mouth or tongue licking the Genitals ) is low risk.  However, it is not ‘no risk’ and is also a risk factor for STI, such as Syphilis and Gonorrhoea.  So use a condm for Oral Sex to protect youself and your partner. There are flavoured Condoms available which have been specially designed for oral sex.

Arousal »

… The nature of sexual activity desired by a partner may be unacceptable to another, such as Oral sex . Again, negotiation may resolve this.

The sexual orientation or paraphilias (sexual behaviour preferences of a more unusual nature) of a partner may be at odds with that of the other and hidden from them.

A partner may be less careful with regard to personal hygiene and this may be off-putting.

Other Methods of Contraception »



This method of contraception requires you to take a pill every day for 3 weeks and then have a week free. These pills contain two hormones oestrogen and progestogen.

The main method of action of these pills is to prevent you releasing an egg. If taken correctly the combined pill has a very low failure rate. Prior to being given a combined pill you …

C Card Scheme »

… anal or vaginal sex . Supplied with lubricant.

FLA = Flavoured

Can be used for oral sex. To use on a female, carefully cut a new condom into a square.

SEN = Sensitive

A thin, extra-fine condom.

NAT = Natural

For vaginal, anal or oral sex.

LAT = Latex-free

For people with an allergy to latex or rubber.

FEM = Femidom

These go inside a woman’s vagina. They are also suitable if you have an allergy to latex or rubber.

VAR = …

Chlamydia »

… Chlamydia come from?

It can be easily passed on through Vaginal , Anal and, perhaps, Oral sex . There is no evidence to show that it can be passed on from toilet seats, sharing towels or cups. An infected mother can pass it on to her baby’s eyes and lungs at birth. It can also be spread from Genitals to eyes with your fingers. Using a condom will greatly reduce your chances of becoming infected with chlamydia.

What is Chlamydia?

Chlamydia (trachomatis) is a …

Safer Sexual Health »

… Do apply more lubricant when you change your condom.

Do use flavoured condoms only for oral sex.

Do use only one condom at a time.  Using two condoms at once won’t give you extra protection; the condoms are more likely to slip off or break.

Do remove your condom once used, wrap it in a tissue and put it into a bin.  It’s not a good idea to flush it down the toilet.

Emergency Contraception

If you have had sex without using contraception or if your usual …

Syphilis »

… How is Syphilis passed on?

Syphilis can be easily spread through vaginal, anal and oral sex.  Even if you have had the infection before, you can catch it again. Syphilis may also be passed on through deep kissing if the infected partner has an ulcer (chancre) in their mouth.

Syphilis can be passed on from a pregnant mother to her baby at any stage of the pregnancy . If syphilis is found during pregnancy it can be treated to prevent the infection being transmitted …

Herpes »

… cause of genital herpes.

Type two…

causes genital herpes but can very rarely cause oral cold sores.

Herpes in the body

Once the herpes virus gets into your body, as well as causing an initial reaction, it remains in your body permanently but not causing any harm. It may lie dormant like this for the rest of your life. Sometimes, however, it travels back to the surface of your skin and causes another bout of symptoms.

What are the symptoms?

The first time someone is …

Sexual Harassment »

… or trade union representative or even a friend to be with you. A witness is good for giving you moral support and may be able to provide or back-up evidence later if necessary. If you find it easier, you could write a letter, but remember to keep a copy.

Keep a record of any incidents and any action you take (a diary, copies of letters etc.). A diary should include the date and time of an incident, factual description of the unwanted activity, who else was present and how it made you …

I have cold sores »

… It is possible, though unusual, for the two types to cross over during an attack if unprotected oral sex takes place.

Unable to Orgasm (Anorgasmia) »

… women experience orgasm with penetrative sex alone, with many others requiring additional clitoral stimulation. As many as 12% never attain orgasm, this being known as anorgasmia.

This does not stop sex from being enjoyable or pleasurable, and lack of orgasm is only a problem if the woman feels it to be so.

Physical causes of anorgasmia can include hormonal imbalance resulting in a lack of arousal, or insufficient engorgement of the female genitalia in arousal to provide …

Dysfunction Treatments »

… it may sound. Any mild pain is short-lived. This method has a high success rate, better than with oral medication, and is suitable for most individuals. Any fear of needles would have to be overcome.


The erection enabling drug is introduced directly into the urethra in pellet form, using a plastic applicator. The urethra is the tube in the penis out of which both urine and semen pass. Urinating before insertion lubricates the urethra and makes the process easier. It may be …

Cystitis »

… you should always practice safer sex. This means using condoms for vaginal, anal and oral sex. Condoms have really changed. You can get them in all different colours, shapes and flavours. Enjoy sex without penetration – why not try kissing, hugging, massaging, masturbating and body rubbing? All of these are safe and fun.

Further information

Many women get cystitis: around 1 in 3 women will experience cystitis at some point in their lives.  This leaflet looks …

Prevention »

… hepatitis B (if not already infected).

Other sexual activities that can transmit hepatitis

Oral sex, which is licking/sucking the penis or vagina, can result in the transmission of hepatitis B. If you want to protect yourself from this then you could use a condom without any lubricant on it, or a vaginal barrier such as a dental dam. Hepatitis B can be contracted if you swallow faeces (poo) from someone with the virus. Therefore, if you rim someone (lick around their anus) …

Sex and Ageing »

… sex may decline due to hormonal changes in both men and women.

In men, more prolonged manual or oral stimulation may be needed to attain an erection which itself is not as rigid as before. Orgasm may be less frequent and less intense. Ejaculation may be less forceful. The period of time before another erection is possible – the refractory period – is likely to be longer.

In women, dryness may make penetration or stimulation of the vagina more difficult, more irritating or …

Anus and Rectum »

… relax the sphincter, to prevent pain or damage occurring through resistance.

Any unprotected oral or penetrative anal sex makes the person vulnerable to the numerous infections which are outlined in detail elsewhere on this site under the headings of HIV - AIDS - Hepatitis and Infections. It is useful to make yourself aware of the dangers involved upon becoming infected, and take the precautions outlined in the Safer Sex section of the site. It is safer to use a condom for …

Ovarian Cancer »

… be more at risk. It also seems to affect more women who have never been pregnant and not used oral contraception.

Preventative action

There is no satisfactory general screening procedure as is routinely available for cervical cancer. However, those women with a family history of the disease might benefit from screening for the gene associated with increased risk. You should bring such a history to the attention of your doctor.

Given that pregnancy, the use of …

Uterine / Endometrial Cancer »

… of a problem. Given the cancer’s association with increased exposure to oestrogen, the use of oral contraception is felt to be protective against this cancer.

It is also recommended that post-menopausal women who have not had their uterus removed should only use combined HRT. Three monthly progestogen bleeds may also be induced to protect the lining of the womb thickening or becoming cancerous.

Being nulliparous i.e. having never had any pregnancies increases the risk of this …

Rape and Sexual Assault »

… offences into a single Act.  The Act broadens the definition of rape to include anal and oral rape of women and men, as well as vaginal rape.  Rape is defined as penetration of someone’s vagina, anus or mouth (to however small an extent) by a penis without consent or reasonable belief in consent.  The Act defines consent as free agreement and makes it clear than consent can be withdrawn at any time.  The Act also sets out an offence of sexual assault by penetration, …

Learning About Sex »

… through a misguided perception that disabled people are non-sexual or through some imposed moral objection) it causes unnecessary Anxiety and alienation.  It can be frightening and confusing for anyone discovering their sexuality; everyone has sexual needs and should be supported through this process. Lack of understanding can leave disabled people very vulnerable to abuse or exploitation, or exposed to the risks of Sexually Transmitted Infections .

Full, open and appropriate …